About the pianist
Ruifan Xuan is a classical pianist currently studying for her postgraduate degree at the Royal College of Music in London. Her idea for Last Minute Pianist started after realising how many musicians are frequently let down by accompanists, often through no fault of their own, creating a lot of extra pressure to find a new pianist when time is usually very limited. Ruifan wanted to create an option for musicians so that even during these unfortunate situations, an accompanist can still be found with ease and the stress taken away, allowing the musician to quickly get their focus back onto the music & event! A brief overview of Ruifan's journey so far can be read below.
Hi there, my name is Ruifan (Ruth) and I am a pianist living in London, recently starting studies towards my postgraduate degree in music performance. In July 2019 I achieved a first class undergraduate degree from the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire.
I began learning piano with my mother at the age of 4 and started accompanying just a few years later for my grand-auntie who at the time had many violin students needing a pianist to accompany them for their upcoming graded exams. This was a great introduction to the world of accompaniment and knew even at that point it was something that I wanted to continue with. At the age of 10 I was invited to play for the choir of my school who were entered into the
international choir competition of Beijing and together we achieved bronze prize.
was often at very short notice as other pianists either became ill or realised they didn't have the time to get all the repertoire sorted. It really added on the pressure but when I look back I realise it was actually very good training! A few months ago I was asked to learn a one hour recital's worth of songs within 3 days as the vocalist's original accompanist suddenly dropped out. It was a stressful few days for us both but we kept focused and worked well together, ending up with the student achieving the highest mark of her year which she was extremely happy about. It was a great feeling knowing I was able to step in at the last moment to help her out.
During my middle and high school conservatoire years in China, I regularly accompanied friends and students for their end of year recitals and competitions. This
Photos credit: Dobromir Tsenov
Earlier last year I had the privilege of accompanying a semi-final percussionist for the BBC Young Musician 2018, and in May this year my partner and I released our first CD together containing the entire Mozart duet sonatas which was a great achievement for us both. You can have a listen at the bottom of the page, we've nearly reached 20,000 streams! I continue to accompany during my time studying in London, having most recently just learnt the second part of Beethoven's 5th Piano Concerto for a competition my friend took part in.
I really do enjoy accompanying as every musician tends to have their own unique musical style and way of working which you gradually see during the time you rehearse and perform. It always makes me happy when I know I have been able to help someone become more confident about performing and go on to be able to produce great sounding music together. I look forward to working with you soon!
Physical copy available here.